Sipi Falls | Uganda
Meet SIPI FALLS, a mix of natural typica, SL14, SL28 and bugishu varieties, grown at 1500-2000masl from various smallholder producers in Eastern Mbale, Uganda.
Expect to taste: mango, tropical fruit cup, lemonade, milk chocolate, nashi, paw paw & yuzu
TL;DR: Stars, planets, varieties, terroir, and of course extraordinary people all aligned to bring you this stunning basket of tropical fruit… no wait, coffee, it’s definitely coffee. Oh, and it's organic too!
Bordering Kenya, and named after the mountain’s famous waterfall nearby, Sipi Falls is a wet mill in the Kapchorwa District of Uganda, and home to some of the best organic coffee in Africa. Elevation, the enormous expanse of the mountain (Mount Elgon) where the farms are located, and a long history of agricultural experience, all lend to ideal growing and milling conditions for the coffee.
In 2002, the wet mill at Sipi Falls became Africa’s first certified organic producer, and even developed a system to recycle its wastewater through a series of filtered lagoons that then help to maintain a large organic nursery to benefit local farmers. Processing coffee cherries from 8,000 local organic farms across the northern part of the mountain, the mill facilitates retrieval of the cherries, and centralised mechanical de-mucilaging, fermentation, washing, patio pre-drying, mechanical drying and conditioning at their mill property at an elevation of 1800m. The on-site cupping lab allows the export company to taste every batch immediately after the drying is completed, and then again a few weeks later to guarantee the quality for export. The quality of the processing shines through the flavours expressed, and also by centralising and scaling the processing productions, results in a higher cherry price for farmers. The end result is a coffee that shows clean expression of the surrounding terrain, with an incredible richness, floral qualities and overall sweetness.
Our approach to roasting this coffee was to keep it nice and quick to highlight some of that famous fruit and acid from the SL14 and SL28 varieties (looking at you Kenya). After nailing that, we then made sure to keep our finishing temperature low to not spoil any of the natural sweetness that this coffee has so much of.
We prefer our filter brews from a v60, but we won’t judge for use of anything at all to make yourself a coffee - even a (clean) sock.
Our recommended ratio when brewing filter coffee is 60g of coffee per litre of water. Simply scale this down, or up, for your desired size of brew.
With all methods, you’ll want: a grind size similar to granulated sugar, boiling water, and about 3 minutes of brewing time. This goes for v60, aeropress, plunger, and the (still hopefully clean) sock.
Our favourite recipe for v60:
- 20g of medium to coarsely ground coffee, it’ll feel a little like granulated sugar.
- Set your kettle to boil, and ready your socks to be rocked.
- We use a 60g bloom, with a swirl of the slurry to make sure it’s all wet. You can stir of that’s easier, just don’t rip the paper!
- After that, when your timer is at 45 seconds, add more water to a total of 200g, and swirl gently.
- Then finally at 1:15 on your timer, add the rest of your water, to 330g, and do one last little swirl.
- Wait till it drains through, roughly 3:30 is a good time, pour into your favourite mug, and let those socks be rocked.
If you’d like more info or tips, get in touch! firstname.lastname@example.org